Indian students secure over 90,000 US visas for higher education, ET TravelWorld


Indian students have once again secured the highest number of US visas for higher education, marking the third consecutive year of this achievement. According to the US Embassy in India, over 90,000 student visas were issued to Indian applicants during the summer months of June, July, and August. This remarkable milestone highlights the strong educational ties between India and the United States.

In an official announcement on X, formerly Twitter, the US Embassy in India expressed its delight, stating, “The US Mission in India is pleased to announce that we issued a record number – over 90,000 – of student visas this summer/in June, July, and August.” The embassy also emphasised that this summer, nearly one in four student visas issued worldwide was granted in India.

The surge in Indian students choosing the United States for their higher education reflects the quality of American educational institutions and the opportunities they offer. It also showcases the determination and aspirations of Indian students who strive to achieve their academic goals on a global stage.

The US government facilitated the visa application process by opening visa appointments for F1 student visas across its consulates in India. These appointments were available from mid-July to mid-August, aligning with the student intake season. While India maintains its position as a significant source of international students for US universities, China remains the largest contributor of students pursuing higher education in the United States.In 2022, a record-breaking 125,000 student visas were issued to Indian nationals, surpassing the number granted to students from any other country. As of 2023, approximately 200,000 Indian students are enrolled in US academic institutions, constituting more than 20 percent of the international student population in the United States.

The US Consulate in Mumbai had recently announced that the US Mission to India would process tens of thousands of student visa applications during its student intake seasons in June-August and November-December. Outside of these peak seasons, emergency appointments for student visa applicants will be limited and granted only under specific circumstances.

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As the festive tourist season approaches in India, the impact of this visa suspension on inbound tourism remains a focal point, and all stakeholders are keenly observing how the situation evolves in the coming days. Canada has consistently been one of the leading sources of tourists to India. In 2021, approximately 80,000 Canadian tourists travelled to India.

To ensure a smooth visa application process and timely commencement of their study programs, students are encouraged to work closely with their educational institutions. They can request an early issuance of the I-20 Certificate of Student Eligibility, which is now valid up to 12 months before the program’s start date. Additionally, students may explore options for delaying or deferring their admission if necessary.The US Consulate further provided guidance for specific cases, including graduate, research, or teaching assistants with time-bound responsibilities, returning students unable to renew via interview waiver, or those whose previous student visas were lost or stolen.

Indian students’ continued preference for US universities underscores the enduring appeal of American higher education. It also demonstrates the determination of Indian youth to pursue academic excellence on a global stage. The close educational ties between India and the United States are poised to strengthen further in the years to come.

  • Published On Sep 26, 2023 at 06:02 PM IST

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